A Year of Fun from A Bunch of People

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What a year it is going to be for everyone who attends the 2022 events and shows put on by A Bunch of People Arts and Events (ABOP). They have a stack of fun things to do at affordable prices for this year.

“The key for us are fun, charity, low-cost and fun again!” Amanda Burger, founder of ABOP said, smiling widely. “Given how inflation is rising, low-cost events will be a major need locally, and now, with our three sponsors, it is even more possible!” 

This has been the first year ABOP, which was founded in 2018, has sought sponsorship to offset costs so that their Christmas donation to House of Lazarus (HOL) could be increased. Last Christmas, ABOP gave $1,600 to HOL, the profit from their four events in 2021. HOL then found three local families needing help with overwhelming debt. “This is the one of the raison d’êtres of ABOP. It is an outcome of having fun, what is better than that?” added Harmony Koiter, one of the Directors of the Board and the lead on their upcoming October True Stories event.

ABOP has been adding more writing and theatrical events for their 2022 season, establishing a need to find a home-base out of which to work. They approached John and Sarah Meharg of Armour Development who offered them free use of a rehearsal hall on the second floor of the North Dundas Business Centre (NDBC) on Main Street in Winchester.

“This is so perfect for us. Armour Development said yes as soon as we asked. All our shows will be across the street at the Old Town Hall, so it is perfect”,  said Suzanne Millaire, VP of the Board of Directors and lead on the Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad Car Rally/Scavenger Hunt which will be held in August, for the 2nd year. 

The Old Town Hall in Winchester is managed by the Township of North Dundas, which has just granted ABOP’s free use of the stage space for their performances and technical and dress rehearsals for the year; removing one of their major expenses.

“We are so pleased with this sponsorship. Our major expense, other than insurance and printing, has been the rental of the Old Town Hall. It is such a great little theatre, and is perfect for our shows, including our new Sketch Comedy Show the last weekend in May, which we are presently writing in a writer’s room format with five writers at the NDBC. We will then perform it all across the street at the Old Town Hall,” said Marie-Thérèse, lead on the Sketch Comedy writing and show and Board Director.

This year ABOP is reinstating Sing It! A day where people come together to learn a song in three or four part harmony and perform it for online presentation- all within just a few hours. Sing it! is based on Toronto’s Choir, Choir, Choir, only smaller and local. The first Sing it! was held in 2019 and within three hours participants (about 30 people) learned and performed Queen’s We are the Champions and We will Rock You in four part harmony. This event will be held in May, so sign up early! Cost to participate is $10.

One of ABOP’s major events is their Writing in 150 writing competition, which will be held again in March, 2022. This major event has never missed a year, even during the pandemic. The first year it was held, everyone participated and wrote alongside each other while at McCloskey’s. During the pandemic, they moved the competition to online, and this year you can write from your home, or join others at their new space at the NDBC. The Writing in 150 event is when the writers have 2 ½ hours (150 minutes) to write a fiction, non-fiction, poem (or spoken word), or song based on a prompt word, on which each writer must base their work. 1st and 2nd place winners are published in a book by Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. 1st place winners will also be featured on Perch magazines website. For the Song Writing (and Spoken Word, if a poem is meant to be presented as spoken) the 1st place winners will professionally record their piece with Railroad Recording Company. 

“Railroad Recording Company offered this to us and, of course, we are ecstatic that they would offer such a costly prize!  The wealth of experience David and Laura have over at Railroad Recording is amazing, and for them to offer to work with us is a real compliment, said Patrick Burger – the Board Director who leads the financial and written accounting needed for a not-profit organization to function.

Writing in 150 will be held on Saturday, March 26, 2022 starting at 11:00 am. Writers can work from home, or join together to write in the ABOP new space. If you join in writing onsite, the writers get together after they submit their work to share with each other and the public can come and hear them being presented for free. To join the writing competition the entry fee is $25 from your home, or $30 onsite at the NDBC. Winners will be announced publicly two weeks later.

To enter: or to request information on any of their events, email: abunchofpeopleartsandevents@gmail.com.

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